Re: [CR]Ebay transactions and responsiblity

Date: Sun, 29 Oct 2006 16:56:43 -0800 (PST)
From: Raymond Dobbins <>
Subject: Re: [CR]Ebay transactions and responsiblity
To: Tom Hayes <>, Classic Rendezvous Bike List <>
In-Reply-To: <>


Your first instinct is correct - eBay items lost in transit are the buyer's responsibility. The item becomes your property after you pay. At that point you have the right to take possession of the item in accordance with the terms of the auction, which is usually by mail. Even where the seller does not offer shipping insurance, it is incumbent upon you to request insurance if want it. I believe the law in most states is that unless otherwise agreed by the parties to a purchase and sale transaction, the "risk of loss" passes to the buyer immediately after the transaction is completed. In some cases, the risk of loss is the buyer's even when the item is still in possession of the seller. On eBay, however, it is understood that the risk of loss remains with the seller until he places the item in the hands of the shipper. As soon as the shipper takes possession of the item, the seller's responsibilty is extinguished. (Of course that won't prevent a sore buyer from giving you a negative feedback saying "Item never received.") If the seller loses or damages your item before shipping it, it's his loss and you are entitled to a refund.

As a seller on eBay, I have bought insurance - at my expense and for my own peace of mind - on a couple of relatively expensive items that were going outside the US. On very expensive items my buyers have always wanted insurance, which I am happy to purchase for them. Fortunately I've never needed to make a claim - from what I've read here, that can be a nightmare, so I'm very very grateful for that.

May all your packages arrive safely and promptly!

Ray Dobbins Miami Florida USA

Tom Hayes <> wrote: In a slight tangent of the current thread on Ebay transactions, I would like to ask about the responsibity when items are sent. I don't know whether I am asking this question morally or legally, or neither of those, and perhaps more in the vein of other members' sense of right in selling and buying on Ebay. Where does the responsiblity rest for lost uninsured items sent through the mail? I recently sent a relatively expensive ($200) to an international buyer. He never received it; I provided the receipt with the customs number on it (which, according to the US Postal Service is not traceable) indicating it was sent.

I have absolutely no reason to not believe this person when he states that he did not receive it, and he has been extremely polite in his requests and responses to me, and has made no demands.

I know when buying on Ebay, though it has only happenned twice, where I did not receive items sent that I was sure were sent, my sense of right is that I am out the item if I did not buy insurance when offerred. I am not sure that is right either; after all, who assumes the liability of the carrier, the sender or the receiver?

Anyone with some thoughts that they'd like to share privately?

Tom Hayes
Chagrin Falls, Ohio USA